Who Can Receive Social Security Disability Benefits?
Typically the Social Security Administration pays benefits to people who cannot do any work due to a medical condition and is found disabled by Social Security’s rules. Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) benefits are paid to a disabled worker who has paid into the Social Security trust fund enough to qualify for the benefit. If a disabled person has not paid enough into the Social Security trust fund to qualify for SSDI benefits, then the person can receive Supplemental Security Income (SSI) benefits if he or she meets the income and resource guidelines. A big question for many people is can my family get benefits if I am disabled? Certain family members of disabled workers can receive benefits from Social Security.
A minor child of a disabled worker receiving SSDI benefits usually can get benefits on that disabled parent’s Social Security earnings record until the child turns 18 or graduates from high school which ever is later. The spouse of a disabled worker getting SSDI benefits can also usually get benefits on their disabled spouse’s earnings record if they are not working and have the disabled worker’s child or children in their care until the youngest child turns 16.
There are two other disability programs that allow family members who are themselves disabled to receive benefits from a family member’s benefits. The first program pays benefits to a Disabled Adult Child. If a person is found to be disabled under Social Security’s rules before age 22, that person can receive benefits on a parent’s earnings record if the parent is drawing either retirement or disability benefits or is deceased. The second program is for widows or widowers of a deceased worker. Disabled Widows Benefits are paid to certain widow(er)s age 50-60 from their late spouse’s earnings record and are found disabled under Social Security’s rules.
In the case of someone receiving SSI benefits, family members cannot get benefits based on the disabled person’s SSI benefits.
To find out more about these programs, you can contact the Social Security Administration at 866-701-7302 or ssa.gov.
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